Snooker: Taylor, the comeback marvel of '85, to retire
Saturday 22 August 1998
The 49-year-old from Northern Ireland arrived at his decision this week after losing his opening two matches in the pro-circuit's qualifying school in Plymouth. Taylor, beaten 5-2 by Stephen O'Conner in the European Open preliminaries, said: "After that I started thinking to myself what am I doing here.
"I'm just not enjoying the game anymore and I've always said that when that happens I'll call it a day. I will carry on until the end of the season and the aim is to go out at the World Championship in Sheffield.
"I haven't been back there to play for three years and it would be nice to finish my career at the Crucible where I have my greatest memory."
Taylor, who turned professional in 1971 before the game's rise in popularity, made his breakthrough into the winner's circle by triumphing at the inaugural grand prix in 1984.
However, he will for ever be associated with his match against Steve Davis in the following year's world final. Trailing 8-0, Taylor appeared to be heading towards a heavy defeat but he clawed his way back into contention and, at 12.19am in front of a record 18.5m BBC2 viewers, he sank the black in the deciding frame to win 18-17.
Taylor added: "People still ask me about the final black and the finger- wagging. I don't think a day goes by when it doesn't crop up in conversation with somebody. I hope it continues for a long time."
Stephen Hendry, six times a world champion, said: "Dennis is a great character. When he leaves the competitive scene it will be a big loss for the game."
Taylor, a member of snooker's elite top 16 for 18 consecutive seasons from 1976 onwards, is seventh on the all-time prize-money list with pounds 1,485,892 and has won 14 tournaments world-wide, including the 1987 Benson and Hedges Masters.
In recent years, though, Taylor has found winning form progressively more difficult to achieve. He has lost his last eight matches in pro-events and last season slipped from 34th to 52nd in the world rankings.
Taylor, the oldest player among the top 100, said: "I have a fairly full diary away from the table and it costs me money to set days aside to play in the qualifiers."
Latest in Sport
Arsenal have no plans to stock Petr Cech inspired caps in club shops - yet
Petr Cech blasts Chelsea supporters who sent him death threats after £11m Arsenal transfer: 'They are not true fans'
Nathaniel Clyne joins Liverpool: Transfer news live - Arda Turan decision, Petr Cech reaction, Sergio Ramos to Manchester United
Christian Benteke to Liverpool: Aston Villa striker ready to reject Tottenham
Arda Turan announcement expected on Friday: Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United possible destinations
- 1 Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
- 2 Greece crisis: Alexis Tsipras accepts troika bailout proposals with conditions
- 3 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 4 French woman dies in freak bungee jumping accident
- 5 Facebook rainbow profile pictures likely being tracked by social network
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Pentagon accuses Russia of 'playing with fire' over nuclear threats towards Nato
They are neither a 'state' nor 'Islamic': Why we shouldn't call them Isis, Isil or IS
£28000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Project Coordinator is requir...
£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a 3-4 month pro rata fi...
£16000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Telesales Executive is requir...